Dear Clergy Colleagues,
The Rev. Jaynne Cairns Gott, Deacon, died on September 15th. She was 83 years old. Jaynne was born August 9th, 1930 in Independence, MO. She married Charles Lawrence Gott, May 15, 1949 and had 2 children (twin daughters one of whom died in a car accident)
She had an AA Degree from Shoreline Community College, (1982) and a Certificate from the School of Theology, Diocese of Olympia, (1998)
She was ordained to the diaconate on June 24, 2000 by Bishop Sandy Hampton. She served this diocese as a deacon and was appointed to St. Andrew’s Place in Port Angeles and served both St. Luke’s, Sequim and St. Andrew’s, Port Angeles. She served in some capacity right up to the time of her death. She was a member of the North American Association for the Diaconate.
Before being ordained to the diaconate, Jaynne had worked as a visiting nurse at Seattle’s Children’s Hospital where she supported families whose children were not responding to treatment. After moving to Sequim, Jaynne worked with hospice care. Jaynne’s particular ministry was to the aged and dying. She was deeply gifted in grief counseling and exercised her diaconal ministry in the greater community in many ways. She mentored Grief Support for Parents who had suffered the loss of adult children and worked with the Peninsula Chapter of Compassionate Friends ; she volunteered to accompany sheriff’s officers when delivering death notices to parents; and
was the acting chaplain for the retired military officers’ association.
Jaynne also promoted the Maritime Ministry’s ditty bag program and encouraged people to get involved with Habitat for Humanity. She wanted people in the church to use their talents to become more involved with people in need “rather than concentrating on Bazaar crafts.” She wrote in one of her annual reports that, “I need 48 hr. days!” She enjoyed her pastoral care work and was proud of “the team that goes to St. Andrew’s Place every Tuesday for Prayer & Praise,” as few people wanted to be involved in visiting nursing homes or assisted living facilities.
Jaynne also served on the Episcopal Charities Appeal and served not only at St. Andrew’s, Pt. Angeles and St. Luke’s, Sequim but also supplied other churches on the Peninsula.
In 2003, Jaynne’s prayer was that “I can continue my active ministry until I am 75.”
In 2004, prompted by her husband’s heart attack and a desire for more time with her family, Jaynne retired from her daily duties but continued to work as a deacon in the community and her reports for the next few years shows her to have had a very active retirement.
Jaynne had an empathy for those who were alone, ill, facing surgery or fearing death and she had a talent for meeting and making conversation with strangers as a way to serve the Lord. As she said, “A smile or a greeting is often all a person needs to feel safe in conversation”
It is interesting that she focused on a smile because I do believe she had one of the most beautiful smiles I had ever seen, and it was more often than not displayed on her face. She was a dear person, and a devoted servant of Jesus Christ in her vocation of deacon. I will miss her and I hope you will pray for her family as they grieve. Her life is one to be celebrated and with deep gratitude for her, and her ministry, I do just that.